The Howl

Yes, you may recognize that song title. It's from the first CD I ever bought. I bought the CD before I even owned a CD player. My cassette copy of Samhain's "Initium" was eaten by my friend's car, and I was bummed. I couldn't find a replacement copy, so I bought a CD. Then I taped it on my brother's stereo.

I hate CDs.

I'm a vinyl person. No, I don't like to dress up as Catwoman and have creepy sex with drunk housewives. Well, not usually. When I'm talking about vinyl, I mean records, LPs, EPs, 45s, 7"s, 12"s. The music sounds better, the art is bigger and it feels more like art and less like entertainment.

Most of the music I listen to these days is punk and blues. The two have more in common than most people think. A lot of my punk is on record. Almost all of my blues is on CD (rare blues records cost more money than I care to think about). Sure, the music loses something when it's reduced to ones and zeros, but the sense of history is there and the magic that soaks through the speakers is still strong.

I'm not a huge fan of MP3s, as this has made art even more entertainment-like. You can't argue with convenience, though. When you can put a couple thousand songs in your pocket, work becomes far more tolerable. You can drown out the stupid with Opiate For The Masses and appreciate the irony.

I once went to a used record store to check out the stock. This was back in PA near when the glorious Nikki lives. The owner of the store was a scum bag. No prices on anything. His method was seeing how wealthy you looked and what kind of care you drove. He had told me that he just got a new collection of tapes in. I looked at what he had, and there was Big Black's "Songs About Fucking." I wanted this badly. I had just been thinking of buying it. I asked how much it was.

Forty dollars.

His reasoning? They didn't make the cassette anymore.

That was not true. I had just seen it new for around eight dollars in a catalog. I just hadn't ordered it yet. When I told him that, he told me it had to be a misprint. Obviously I didn't buy it or ever step foot back in there again.

Record stores are going the way of the dinosaur these days. Can't say I'm too displeased, as all the ones I've been in as of late have sucked. The new music mostly sucks, and the record stores are run by leeches.

Good riddance to bad medicine, I say.


Nikki said...

Oh wow, I remember that store now! That guy was a total fuckwad. I had completely forgotten all about that. I can't remember the name of it though. Something relatively mundane and lame.

-Doug Brunell "America's Favorite Son" said...

I think it was Wax Trax (or Tracks), like you said. A little shack, packed with some cool stuff, but run by a prick.